By DOW JONES NEWSWIRES
Iraq's crude oil exports during the first 10 days of September were less than 2 million barrels a day, below the level Iraq had exported over the last two months, a senior Iraqi oil official said Tuesday.
The official said crude oil production remained in the same level but local consumption of crude oil had increased over the last two weeks.
"More crude oil has been pumped to Baiji refinery," he said. The refinery, 200 kilometers north of Baghdad, has a processing capacity of around 175,000 barrels a day. There was some maintenance issues in some production installations, he added.
In August, Iraq exported some 2.009 million barrels a day, while in July the level was 2.035 million.
Iraq is eager to increase its exports in order to earn more revenues to rebuild the country's war-hit infrastructure.
Iraq had earned some $24.6 billion from oil sales over the first eight months of this year, officials said. Baghdad had earned some $60 billion from oil sales in 2008 because of higher oil prices.
-By Hassan Hafidh; Dow Jones Newswires; +962 799 831 831; hassan.hafidh@ dowjones.com